This week, I talked with Jon Morse about the Kansas State Wildcats. I’d like to start by thanking Jon Morse for taking the time to chat. Now, let’s get to the questions and learn a bit more about the Wildcats.
1. How much do you think the absence of Jesse Ertz has affected this Kansas State team?
It's hurt a lot, although his replacements haven't performed poorly. However, K-State has lost four games since Ertz disappeared during the Texas game. One was by a single touchdown, one was in overtime and one was by five points. All three of those games would probably have been won with a more experienced quarterback making fewer mistakes.
2. What do see Kansas State trying to do defensively to try and stop this Oklahoma State offense that's been a force to be reckoned with this season?
The bright side for K-State is that D.J. Reed and Duke Shelley are very good cornerbacks, and should limit the damage Mason Rudolph can do with James Washington and Marcell Ateman. But that just leaves Rudolph free to attack the center of the field, and that's the Wildcat Achilles. Saturday may be a day Justice Hill would just as soon forget, as the run defense is pretty good.
3. What would you say is the biggest strength of Kansas State is?
Right now, we're so dejected and depressed that the only real answer is the offensive line... and even they haven't really performed up to the usual K-State standard.
4. Who would you say is the KSU player to watch on Saturday?
D.J. Reed. Watching him play cornerback is almost always a joy, and obviously he's a danger to score on kick returns any given weekend.
You'll also want to monitor wide receiver Dalton Schoen. All he does is catch passes, even when nobody else seems to be able to.
5. Last year's game in Manhattan was a close one. Are you expecting a similar result on Saturday?
Oh, hell no. I expect a rout. I have to dig very deep into my bag of optimism to see a pathway to K-State winning this game.
6.Do you think a lot of Oklahoma State fans could be overlooking Kansas State? If so why?
I know for a fact a lot of Oklahoma State fans have looked at the K-State offense and assume the Cowboy defense will look good Saturday. But as for generally overlooking them as far as the end result, probably not, no.
7. Score prediction?
A billion to a surprising several hundred million. Neither of these teams can stop anyone, and despite what people think is a dysfunctional offense K-State is still scoring over 30 a game with inexperienced back-up quarterbacks. You thought Bedlam was out of hand in the first half? I don't think sanity will assert itself after halftime in this one.